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Abortion Statistics: Year ended December 2015
Embargoed until 10:45am  –  17 June 2016

Abortion Statistics: Year ended December 2015  –  Media Release

The number of abortions performed in New Zealand in 2015 was comparable to last year, Statistics New Zealand said today. A total of 13,155 induced abortions were performed, compared with 13,137 in 2014.

The general abortion rate (abortions per 1,000 women aged 15–44 years) decreased slightly from 14.4 per 1,000 women in 2014 to 14.2 in 2015. This is the lowest rate in over 20 years. The lower abortion rate indicates that the size and/or age structure of the population drove the small increase in the number of abortions, rather than a greater proportion of women having abortions.  

In particular, the abortion rates for younger women have fallen in recent years. The abortion rate for women aged 20–24 years fell from a peak of 41 per 1,000 in 2003 to 23 per 1,000 in 2015. The abortion rate for women aged 15–19 years dropped from 26 per 1,000 to 11 per 1,000 over the same period. 

 See the Abortions Statistics: Year ended December 2015 commentary and tables for more information.

Ends

For media enquiries contact: Anne Howard, Christchurch 03 964 8700, info@stats.govt.nz
Authorised by Carol Slappendel, Acting Government Statistician, 17 June 2016

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